The Economic Report on Africa 2013 recognizes that African commodities can form the basis for industrialization but notes that non-tariff barriers, sanitary and phyto-sanitary barriers and technical barriers to trade, especially for agricultural commodities must be overcome by the concerted efforts of the continent’s institutions and Member States (UNECA & AUC, 2013). These barriers along the whole value-chain reduce returns to farmers while increasing prices paid by consumers. Removing these barriers to regional trade is essential if Africa is to attain its potential in food trade. But to achieve this, governments will need to overcome the political economy realities that have prevented African countries embracing open regional trade in food. They will need to provide a clear and predictable policy framework for regional trade so that institutions that facilitate exchange and mitigate the inherent risks associated with food production can flourish and support efficient and safer market outcomes and a more effective approach to food security in Africa (WB, 2012).
The African Union recognizes the crucial role agriculture in ensuring food and nutrition security in Africa and has passed many important instruments to support agricultural productivity and food trade in Africa. The Summit on Food Security (AUC, 2006) in particular called for harmonization of standards to facilitate free movement of food products in Africa and thus foster food and nutrition security in the continent.
In assessing the factors hindering agro-based trade, AUC & UNECA (2012) indicate that trade in agriculture and food products among African countries faces more challenges that the same products coming into Africa from outside Africa. Some of the barriers encountered can be categorized as standards-related regulations in the domain of the agricultural value chains and trade-facilitation aspects such as labelling and packaging. In this respect, the African Organisation for Standardisation (ARSO) has harmonized priority standards for agriculture and food products which should facilitate the AU agenda. However, the technical nature of many standards has been identified as a major contributing factor to the low uptake and utilization of standards among African enterprises and communities. The situation is exacerbated by the fact that many African countries do not offer specialized expert interpretation of standards for implementers. In the food and agriculture sector, the stakeholders mostly constitute smallholder farmers with limited exposure to technical language. The failure by governments in Africa compounds the problem further.
2. Once you read and understand the Terms of Reference below; register and fill details including the technical and financial proposal (you shall need a google account to save and update the form shared below for your application)
3. TERMS OF REFERENCE
Compilation (monographs) of African indigenous cereals, pulses and oilseeds and their value addition for commercialization
Tuesday, October 25th, 2022 – 7:30 AM – 9:00 AM EST (14:30 – 16:00 EAT)
ASTM International: “ASTM International’s Standards Alliance Project on the Harmonization of Petroleum Standards in West Africa and, ARSO’s Development of African Standards (ARS) for fuels: The importance of testing standards in line with available testing equipment”
ASTM International Committee D02 on Petroleum Products and Lubricants was formed in 1904. With a current membership of approximately 2500 industry professionals and experts and, jurisdiction over 814 standards, published in six volumes of the Annual Book of ASTM Standards, D02 meets twice a year, June and December. During the Committee Week (CW), approximately 1000 members attend 5 days of technical meetings focusing on the latest standards developments in the more than one hundred subcommittees that it serves. This year, the December 4-8 D02 CW to be held in Orlando, Florida, will host eight representatives (two from each of the four ECOWAS countries) that are participating in the ASTM/API (The American Petroleum Institute) Standards Alliance program, aimed at harmonizing petroleum standards in West Africa. To date, two ASTM workshops have been held in Nigeria and Ghana: #petroleum#standardsdevelopment#Ghana
In November 2019, The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), through its public-private partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) – the Standards Alliance – organized a five-day training on international petroleum standards and management systems in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. This event was organized in coordination with the Ivoirian Ministry of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energy and the national standards bodies of Côte d’Ivoire (CODINORM), Ghana (GSA), Nigeria (SON), and Senegal (ASN). The training provided an opportunity for 25 participants to discuss international best practices for petroleum, environmental and economic challenges and, the need for regional harmonization of petroleum standards to maximize economies of scale and ensure high quality petroleum products across the ECOWAS.
ARSO/TC 37, Petroleum and petrochemical products – Technical Committee dealing with Standards Development under the Category.
This workshop, the fourth in a series of five ARSO/ASTM’s webinars scheduled for 2022, is in response to the selection of the topic (one of the five priority topics) through a survey conducted with the members of the African Organization for Standardization (ARSO). The webinar seeks to share the success of the current ASTM/API harmonization of petroleum standards in West Africa while also looking at ARSO’s Development of African Standards (ARS) for fuels and the importance of testing standards in line with available testing equipment in the continent. Public and private sector Industry experts, regulators, ARSO members and consumers are expected to attend.
Panellists & Bios:
This webinar will feature two speakers – one from ASTM and another from an African country to be proposed by ARSO. The ASTM Speaker will highlight the success of the ASTM Standards Alliance Program in West Africa to date and identify existing gaps in test methods in member countries while ARSO Speaker will discuss the Development of African Standards (ARS) for fuels and the importance of testing standards in line with available testing equipment.
The World Food Day is observed annually on 16 October to highlight the millions of people worldwide who cannot afford a healthy diet and the need for regular access to nutritious food. The theme for 2022 is Leave NO ONE behind.
World Food Day 2022 is being marked with a clear focus of the fact that Agriculture and food are the leading sectors for synergies across development and climate action, delivering simultaneously on the Sustainable Development Goals, national growth and food security goals, and climate adaptation and mitigation.
For Africa, Agriculture, providing 60 percent of all employment, constitutes the backbone of most African economies; in most countries, it is still the largest contributor (30-40%) to GDP; the biggest source of foreign exchange and the main generator of savings and tax revenues. The sector still the dominant provider of industrial raw materials with about two-thirds of manufacturing value-added in most African countries being based on agricultural raw materials. Given its backward and forward linkages for industries, agriculture thus remains crucial for economic growth in most African countries, however, Technical Barriers to Trade due to variant standards and Conformity Assessment procedures due to different Africans regional Agricultural Policies limit Agricultural trade and Productivity.
ARSO is promoting harmonization of African standards and Conformity assessment systems focused on facilitating the production and trade of Agricultural and food products, in the context of the AfCFTA Agreement, through eight main sectors namely fish and fisheries products, milk and milk products, horticulture, Coffee, cocoa and tea, live animals, animal feeding and agriculture and biotechnology with the support of experts from African Countries member of ARSO. ARSO is also facilitating. ARSO also continues to engage stakeholders in the development of training modules, Certification guidelines, Value Addition Modules, Conformity Assessment Checklists and Audit Instructions, outreach Materials and as well as in awareness creation for effective food regulatory systems as well as for competitiveness of the Made in Africa Agricultural Products and the MMMEs, while taking advantage of the 4th Industrial Revolution under the ARSO African 4th Industrial Revolution Standardisation Strategy which was launched on 9th December 2021. The initiatives are in tandem with the FAO’s Strategic Framework 2022-31, for the Four Betters: better production, nutrition, environment, life for all, leaving no one behind.